[FM Discuss] new fm (booki) features

adam adam at flossmanuals.net
Mon Jul 4 03:34:36 PDT 2011


So...Aco, Tuukkah and I have been hard at work putting together some new 
features for booki. FM is the debut of some exciting stuff...big thanks 
and hurrah goes to Aco and Tuukkah for all the time they spent working 
on these - planning, implementing, testing. I think these changes 
represent a big step forward for Booki and thanks from all of 'us' is 
due to them both.

We also need to stretch out our thanks to that rather fantastic org that 
has supported FM alot - Internews France. They got behind this dev and 
supported it by including FM in a grant. Many many thanks for this - 
they had their own reasons for doing this and I am sure they were also 
generously inclined to 'just' help us improve booki. Big cheers 
especially to Laurent (a huge supporter of Fm from the early days) and 
Sandra and Thomas.

ok...so. What are the changes? well they are numerous. So, first of 
all...there are now Admin roles for manuals. This is managed in the 
'settings' tab in any manual. You will only see this settings tab if you 
are already an admin for that book. You become an admin by creating a 
new manual or via the settings tab (you need to ask the admin). It is 
possible to make others admins for the manuals. Ad admin gets some 
special abilities. You change attribution information, define language 
and text direction (important for sending to objavi), *manage chapter 
statuses* (more on this below), and define who can edit the manual 
(intended to be used only if spam is an issue).

We will also add to this list of admin abilities the ability to push 
content to www.flossmanuals.net. That means you dont need two accounts - 
one on the publisher and one on booki- you can publish content of 
www.flossmanuals.net directly (I hope to have this up in the next days).

The manage status messages is probably the control that will be most 
used in the settings tab. On each chapter you can set a status for that 
chapter. You can see on the right of a chapter on the TOC (Table of 
Contents) that there is a status. If you click on this you see a pop up 
and can change the status for that chapter from a selected list (to be 
proofed, to be published etc). Until now the status possibilities were 
universal but now they can be defined per manual via the settings tab. 
This is very very cool and Aco did a really great job of making this 
work in a way that is straightforward and easy to use. Very very rockn.

I am actually very excited as I am writing all this...:))) I think all 
this is a huge step forward for fm and booki. Ok..onto more 
features..Aco also made a really nice diff feature. You can now get side 
by side highlighted diffs from the history tab.

Revision viewing -if you choose 'view' for a chapter in the ToC you get 
a dropdown with all the revisions for that chapter. You can simply 
choose them and browse back and forward with the drop down if you want 
to see quickly how the chapter has advanced.

The same view can be accessed by the 'view chapter' button on the 
editing window - the window where you actually edit a chapter. This view 
can be floated and moved anywhere so you can see the original text of 
the chapter as you change it. This is *very* useful for translators of 
course (this is actually why we built it - so translators can see the 
source as they translate).

In addition to all this Aco built a very nice info interface for all 
manuals. Each manual now can be viewed in three ways :
_edit (note: changed from /edit/) - edit interface
_info - gives you information about the manual
_draft - draft view


The info page has info on the book including recent activity etc including:
* 'owner' (we will change this as there is no 'owner' - creator might be 
a better word but suggestions welcome)
* what group it belongs to
* when it was created
* recent activity
* who has worked on it
* who is working on it now
* link to rss to track changes

I have not yet linked this page to the fm interface - need to think 
where it goes but I will do today or tomorrow - you can get to it 
directly via any book url ending with _info

Eventually we want to add other info to the _info but and ideas are very 

So thanks thanks thanks to Aco for all of this and for managing the 
upgrade and merging etc.

Ok...next up and equally exciting. Fm now has micromessaging services. 
Tuukkah (who we were introduced to via FM finland) has done an 
outstanding job building in messaging services. When you log in you will 
see a 'post a message' text appear at the top right of the content box. 
This persists no matter where you are on the site. Ifyou click on this 
you get a pop up and you can send messages from it. Messages have the 
same syntax as status.net (which in turn follows twitter) -
@username - direct message to user
!groupname - message to group
#hashtag - create your own hashtags
βbookname - message book

You can also follow any user/hash/book and if you *join* a group you are 
then auto following the groups tag

That is not all - the message box allows you to send images ('add option 
attachment') and it *excitingly* it allows you to include a content 
snippet through a WYSIWYG editor in the message dialog. The snippet 
feature is built in so you can send anyone in the fm booki universe a 
snippet to translate/check/proof read etc. The same is true for the 
image attchments (you can also pass odt files/pdf etc with this).

thats not all - you can access this dialog from the editor - if you are 
editing a chapter there is a little button in the editor that pops open 
the message dialog with the chapter included in the snippet box already. 
This will shortly include only the highlighted area if there is 
something highlighted...

Also, messages are sent via email to notify you if there is a message. 
Youcan control this from the 'my settings' page. The syntax is obscure 
but in the 'notification filter' you can put (separated by space):
@* - block emails for direct messages to you
#* - block messages from hashtags you are following
!* - block group messages from groups you belong to
~* - block messages form people you are following
ℬ* - block messages from boosk you are following

by default you only get emails from direct messages

You can see all your messages from your profile page.

ok...thats all for now. there is a  bit more but digest this. I am 
really excited by all of this. The tools Aco and Tuukkah have built aid 
the working process and the possibilities for collaboration. I would 
*love* for us to discuss this further on the list - both in general and 
specifics. How can we best use these new tools? How can they be 
improved? also, all bug reports either to booki-dev.flossmanuals.net or 
to the list AND booki-dev.flossmanuals.net (please dont *only* send them 
to the list unless you are trying to work out if it is really a bug)

Many thanks again to Internews, especially the long time allie Laurent, 
and also of course to Aco and Tuukkah



Adam Hyde
Founder, FLOSS Manuals
Project Manager, Booki
Book Sprint Facilitator
mobile :+ 49 177 4935122
identi.ca : @eset

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